By: Jennifer P. Rendon
A SIGHT of disarrayed clothes inside a storage box greeted a 53-year-old businesswoman from Kalibo, Aklan.
It wasn’t long before Arlyn Olbidincha Cabugtan discovered that her P2.7 million cash was missing.
Right away, Cabugtan knew the culprit: 28-year-old Jerryl Nabor, a man he considered as her own child. She immediately went to Kalibo Police Station to report the theft at around 5 a.m. of Sept. 21, 2019.
A manhunt was immediately launched to collar Nabor.
Police went to Madalag town, where the suspect hailed, but his grandmother claimed he was not home.
Police stations in Kalibo towns were also alerted about the incident to help catch Nabor.
More than three hours later, members of Malay Police Station spotted him at the pre-departure area of the Caticlan Jetty Port around 8:45 a.m.
Police Major Jess Baylon, Malay police chief, said the suspect already purchased a Ro-Ro vessel ticket for a 9 a.m. trip to Batangas.
He claimed he was on his way to Alabang, Muntinlupa to meet his sibling,
When police arrested him, the suspect readily admitted to carting away his foster mother’s P2.7 million cash.
Baylon said Nabor also took away assorted jewelry valued at P300,000.
The money was placed inside Nabor’s bag but P79,000 was already gone.
Still, Cabugtan said she was relieved that most of the money was recovered.
The money was supposed to be used for the renovation of their house.
Baylon said the couple was able to sell a property in Mindanao and decided to settle in Kalibo.
‘LIKE OUR OWN SON’
The couple, who is into the money lending business, took the victim into their care when he was just 15 years old.
Thirteen years ago, the couple was eating at a roadside cafeteria when they saw the teenager staring at them.
Thinking that he was hungry, the victim invited the boy to eat with them.
Cabugtan said a friend even told her that the boy was lazy. Despite that, she invited him to stay with her family.
The boy was tasked to clean the house and cook for them.
She tried to send him to school but he declined claiming that he had no birth certificate.
The victim offered to process his birth certificate but Nabor claimed that there are persons who did not finish school yet they turned out to be okay.
She later relented.
In his 13 years with the family, the boy had not stolen anything from them, Cabugtan said.
But Cabugtan cited an instance that the boy took the money which was really intended for him.
“I spared P20 a day for him and put it in a bamboo piggy bank. After 10 months, I was thinking that the money was already several hundreds in pesos but when I checked, none was left,” she said.
When Cabugtan confronted the boy, he admitted that he took the money for computer games.
“I did not mind it because that was really intended for him,” she said.
She also bought cattle for Nabor to raise.
But instead of keeping his money, Cabugtan said Nabor had a penchant for buying clothes and shoes.
Since the suspect was considered family, he knew where the money was kept.
Every afternoon, after doing rounds for his “5-6” business, Cabugtan said Nabor was aware where she hid her collections.
None went missing until Saturday.
The day before the incident, the family claimed that the suspect appeared to be restless.
They opined that he was nervous because he was planning to steal their money. The suspect is now detained while charges are being readied against him.